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The Cuckoo's Nest, The Tailor's Thimble - Reels

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The Cuckoo's Nest, The Tailor's Thimble - Reels


Published November 1925


Irish bagpipes solo, unknown piano player, Columbia 33081-F. O'Nolan billed himself as the "Wicklow Piper," but his piping seems to have little in common with famous Leinster pipers such as the Doran brothers or Leo Rowsome; his charming punchy style is much more reminescent of others who recorded in America such as Tom Ennis. O'Nolan recorded a few piping solos in 1925-26 but his subsequent recorded output over the next five years were vocal discs, backed by a piano, sometimes with clarinet and violin thrown in. The Cuckoo's Nest is almost always played as a hornpipe; O'Nolan plays it as a reel here, and sets it in the key of D, instead of the more commonplace (in Irish music) G. The second tune is now called the Beauty Spot, a title used on a 78 by Sligo musicians Michael Coleman and Michael Walsh. The great Irish-American pipers Barney Delaney and Patsy Touhey recorded this reel on seperate wax cylinders, calling it Colonel Taylor's and the Rising Sun respectively. O'Nolan's title is now used for another tune recorded on 78 by James Morrison and John McKenna. O'Nolan hurries a bit through these tunes; his ornaments and regulator playing on the Tailor's Thimble sound like a simplification of Touhey's piping, which is transcribed in Pat Mitchell's book the Piping of Patsy Touhey.


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